Terrains of Resistance: Nonviolent Social Movements and the Contestation of Place in India

By Paul Routledge; John Agnew | Go to book overview

violent in character (and, therefore, still open to strategic analysis), but for the purposes of this book I concentrate on nonviolent terrains. With the purpose of examining the terrain of resistance concept and explaining how social movement agency is mediated by place, I now relate the experiences of the Baliapal and Chipko movements.


NOTES
1.
In this book I confine my analysis to openly declared resistance terrains. However, Scott has shown that resistance can also take disguised, unobtrusive forms at the material, status and ideological realms of political struggle -- a practice he terms "infrapolitics" ( 1990: 183). Tarrow ( 1992) notes the importance of understanding the differences between everyday resistance that is a prelude to compliance and that which results in organized collective action.
2.
While Foucault ( 1980) has noted that the state is only one of many forms of power that exist within society, Said ( 1983) counters that a central dialectic of opposed forces (between rulers and ruled) still underlies contemporary societies. In the resistance terrains articulated by the Baliapal and Chipko movements, the state is the primary source of domination. However, a terrain of resistance can also be directed against other forms of domination, for example the Dalit movement's struggle against caste oppression (see Joshi 1986). There may also exist terrains within terrains, such as struggles over issues of gender and ethnicity within particular social movements.
3.
In this book I argue that the Indian state has responded through a repressive unity of power that spans coercion, mediation and seduction (after Vaneigem 1983). Coercion is thus the use of both legitimized and subterranean violence by the central and state governments (e.g., through the "Black Laws" mentioned earlier and the use of the Indian army, the paramilitary forces and the police to quell internal dissent). Mediation is the process whereby the state acts as reconciler of social antagonisms and arbiter of disputes within society, for example, between developers and oustees (people ousted from their homes and lands) in various hydroelectric and thermal power projects. Seduction is the process whereby the state attempts to co-opt dissent via bribery and rewards such as rehabilitation plans and compensation schemes. This model finds reflection in Ranajit Guha ( 1989) model of coercion-collaboration-persuasion and owes much to Gramsci ( 1971) model of coercion and consent.

-38-

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Terrains of Resistance: Nonviolent Social Movements and the Contestation of Place in India
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Maps and Tables ix
  • Foreword xi
  • Preface xv
  • Acknowledgments xix
  • Chapter 1 Development and Resistance in India 1
  • Notes 19
  • Chapter 2 Putting Social Movements in Their Place: Social Movement Theory and the Spatial Mediation of Nonviolent Resistance Terrains 21
  • Notes 38
  • Chapter 3 the Baliapal Movement 39
  • Notes 73
  • Chapter 4 the Chipko Movement 75
  • Note 118
  • Chapter 5 India's Terrains of Resistance 119
  • Notes 134
  • Chapter 6 Social Movements, Place and Nonviolent Sanctions 135
  • Notes 149
  • Bibliography 151
  • Index 167
  • About the Author 171
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